- 1.4 km circuit
- 30 mins
- Suitable for
- Walking, Hiking
- Grade 3, Moderate Hike
- Park (national park, conservation park, forest, reserve)
- Talisker Conservation Park
- Fleurieu Peninsula
- Download maps & GPS files
- 1 map PDF
- 2 GPS files
- 15 photosJump to Photos section
- Travel options
- Travel time from Adelaide
- 1-2 hours
About the Walking Trails
Explore the nineteenth century silver mining and ore processing operation. Learn about the ingenuity of the Cornish miners and their families as you walk through this re-vegetated area of Talisker Conservation Park.
We’ve outlined three walking routes below that take in the mine and the lookout.
Silver was discovered at Talisker in 1862 by scottish brothers searching for gold, who named it after the `Talisker of Scotland`, a locality near their homeland Isle of Skye. The ruins of the houses around the mine site were built by miners building on the mine lease rather than the town of Silverton which was north of the mine. With diminishing viability the mining operatations dwindled by 1872, although there was some arsenic mining up until 1925. The mine at Talisker was one of the largest producers of silver and lead in a colony whose early mining history was dominated by copper.
There is a good detailed brochure with map about the history of the Talisker Silver Lead Mine that was published by Mines and Energy.
All the walk options commence from the roadside carpark on Talisker Road. There is an information shelter here. The road in along Talisker Road from South Road is narrow in some spots, with a couple of rough steep sections.
Walk to the Lookout and return (marked in purple)
Walk through the scrub out onto a grassy knoll, with views over Backstairs Passage to Kangaroo Island. There is a picnic bench at the lookout.
You can walk this trail by itself, without walking any other trails. The walk is the easiest of the three options we have detailed. The walk up crosses some an exposed hill, so can be chilly when windy. There are no views of the mine.
Start from the roadside carpark on Talisker Road, and turn right at the information shelter to head up hill.
Talisker Silver Lead Mine Hike (marked in yellow)
1.1km loop, steep sections
This is the route most commonly shown on maps, looping through the centre of the mining area. The loop distance is only 1.1km, not 6km as sometimes seen noted elsewhere. The walk includes a couple of steep sections.
Start from the roadside carpark on Talisker Road, and go down the stairs after the information shelter. When you reach a fork on the fire track, continue left, heading downhill. You’ll see some glimpses of the Crusher House ruins on your left, but continue past that the follow the signs to Price Shaft, and down a steep set of stairs to Glyde Shaft. Here the trail turns around, heading up a steep rocky creekline back up to the Brick Kiln and Crusher House ruins. Loop around the back of the Crusher House Ruins to rejoin the main track you were on before, to retrace your steps back to the carpark.
An option to avoid the steep sections would be to turn around at the top of the stairs, at Price Shaft, and retrace your steps, turning right later to visit the Crusher House ruins.
Talisker Silver Lead Mine Hike – Extended Loop (marked in green)
1.4km loop, steep sections
Explore some of the further reaches of this park, with views over Backstairs Passage to Kangaroo Island (but not the same lookout at the first walk detailed) and the stone quarries. The walk includes a couple of steep sections.
Start from the roadside carpark on Talisker Road, and go down the stairs after the information shelter. When you reach a fork on the fire track, follow the right fork, heading uphill to the ruins of the Manager’s House. Nearby is the ruins of the Office and Stores, from where you will have views over Backstairs Passage to Kangaroo Island. Turn around, and follow the steep track down the hill back towards the mine, where you will meet back up with the main track. Turn right, walking to Price Shaft, and down a steep set of stairs to Glyde Shaft. Here the trail turns around, heading up a steep rocky creekline back up to the Brick Kiln and Crusher House ruins. Just past the Brick Kiln with the Crusher House ruins nearby, watch out for a trail leading off to the right, and follow that up a gully, which then turns and passes the stone quarries. You arrive back in the carpark on Talisker Road, just east of the information shelter.